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Bill Belichick did not enjoy a question about not taking a timeout, with the awkward silence to prove it

Frank Schwab
·2-min read

New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick, in some postgame press conferences, will stand at the podium after one of his trademark short answers and wait silently for the next question. He doesn’t want to be there but he won’t leave, and reporters run out of desire to ask more questions because they know what the response will be.

But Belichick won’t just storm off. He’ll wait it out for the next question. The silence is only a few seconds but it seems like hours.

We reached peak postgame press conference Belichick on Sunday night when he was asked about not calling a timeout in the final minute of Sunday night’s loss to the Seattle Seahawks. “Uncomfortable” doesn’t even describe it.

Bill Belichick’s awkward silence

In the final minute of the game, Cam Newton completed an 18-yard pass to Julian Edelman down to the Seattle 13-yard line. The Patriots had one timeout left. That play to Edelman was snapped at 36 seconds and the next play, an incompletion to Edelman, was snapped at 13 seconds. The Patriots saved their last timeout but the 23 seconds were costly when Newton was stopped on the final play of the game at the goal line.

It made sense why the Patriots didn’t call timeout after Edelman’s catch, because it allowed them to use the whole field on their next play. But it’s also fair to question the strategy. That’s a lot of time to let tick off the clock, and it probably cost them multiple shots at the end zone from the 1-yard line.

This might surprise you, but the greatest coach in NFL history doesn’t like being questioned on strategy topics.

Belichick initially thought the question after the game was about Seattle’s timeout with nine seconds left, after the incompletion to Edelman, and then after it was clarified he gave a “yeah, well” and just sat silently for what seemed like forever instead of answering the question.

The interaction being on Zoom made it even more uncomfortable, if that was possible.

Belichick’s postgame Zoom calls might end up being must-watch theater, just for the possibility of more moments like that.

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick wasn't in a great mood after a loss to Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer)
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick wasn't in a great mood after a loss to Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer)

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